I often have said that aging takes courage.  In a conversation yesterday with a friend who has pulled a muscle (we hope that is all it is) we were commiserating over this and that aging is not for the timid.  As a kid bruises and bumps are shed off like rainwater down a wall.  Now well that is another story.

I deal with lower back pain daily.  Some days better than others.  I have not found one real reason why this hurts.  One doctor told me to change my shoes.  I thought that a little simplistic and looked for another opinion.  The consensus seems to be sciatica.  Some days I walk like a crooked old woman others I am almost upright!  It seems the slightest thing can throw it out.  I am told to exercise and do on occasion yet it is hard to exercise through pain.  I freely admit I am lazy and have a low tolerance to some pain.  The back issue is one of them.  I am convinced if the pain was not there than perhaps I would exercise.

So recently it has been uncomfortable.  I saw these antiseptic pads advertised on TV that are to alleviate pain and thought I might give them a whirl.  It would allow me to not have to sit on ice or a heating pad.  I could still work around as relief was being administered to my aches and pains.  Sounded good to me.

There are several of these options that I found.  There are ‘icy hot’,’ salonpas’ and ‘thermocare’ and probably others.  I purchased the ‘icy hot’ one.  So the adventure began this morning.  I open the box to see one large bag and think to myself,  ‘I paid $7 for ONE pad?’  No fear there were five patches in this bag that turned out to be resealable.

The instructions are simple ‘pop and peel’ and apply.  Ever ready to try something new I look this over and think I can accomplish these three simple steps.

You are shown to pull it to pop it.  I did. It stretches and pulls the seal apart thus POP completed.

Since the pop had separated the plastic covering over the medicinal part I simply took off the two pieces.  Peel completed.

Now I am holding in front of me a 3 inch strip of fabric that is about 8 inches long and slimy sticky on one side and cloth on the other.  I am now going to have to apply the sticky part to a section of my back that aches.  Easier said than done.

I had to think about how to flip it over from one hand to the other and then put it behind my back without having the whole 8 inch strip seal on itself.  I put it in my left hand.  I held the hand way away from myself and moved my arm to the back.   The right arm and hand then went behind my back.  I already had one piece of the patch in my left hand so reached with my right to grab the other corner so I could apply it to the aching spot.  I grabbed slime and then had to decide if I had the right corner or not.  It seemed that I did have it correctly positioned for application.  My fingers are sticky.  So behind my back I think I have it in the proper position though I have already turned one corner into itself I believe.  From the feel of it I am only going to get one shot to apply it correctly after that it will  be gunky and a mess.

With my fingers sort of walking across my back to find the right position for the application,  I come to the place that I believe is far enough away from the aching spot so the whole area will be in the middle of the patch and not just off to one side.  ‘Here goes nothing’ I said to myself and started the application process.  Well it wrinkled a bit.  I tried to pull it off and apply again to no success.  The wrinkle was still there.  I tugged and tried to manipulate it and still no change.  It was going to be on my back with a wrinkle.   Then the corner rolled back on itself as well so I had a wrinkle and a roll.

Now I am the person who sleeps like the ‘Princess and the Pea’.  I cannot stand wrinkles in my bed or a sheet not straight or a pillowcase facing the wrong way.  I had a choice to make.  I was either going to leave this wrinkled rolled patch on and see how it works or pull it off and get back in the shower.  Folks, it is going to be a wrinkle and roll day!  I have to admit that already I am feeling some cooling and we will see if the pain abates.  I am hopeful despite the wrinkle and rolls now plural.

As I was doing this I could only think of one of my favorite movie scenes.  It is in one of my favorite movies “Forget Paris” about a couple who meet in Paris and through an up and down courtship were going to marry.  The whole story is told by their friends as the friends are sitting at a restaurant awaiting the arrival of the engaged couple for their engagement party.  The couple is played by Debra Winger and Billy Crystal.  The scene is when Winger comes home to their apartment and discovers she has left the sliding door cracked.  It is too funny and I will simply let you watch it.

While my antics with the healing patch were not this exaggerated they were close and I was glad I was alone!


One comment on “AGING, ACHING,ANTICS

  1. I had the same pain for 20 years. This type of pain is frequently attributable to tight hamstrings (in the backs of your thighs). Sit on the floor, stretch your legs forward in a V and lean toward your feet, first to the right and then to the left. Don’t bounce or overstretch, just lean gently as far as you are able and you will feel a pull in the hamstrings. Each time hold the lean for 30 seconds. Repeat this process for as many times as you have patience for. The next day repeat this process for as many repetitions as you have patience for. Eventually, instead of sticking your legs both out in a flat V, tuck one of them at the knee and back toward your crotch. Lean in the direction of the bent knee as far as you can until you feel the hamstring stretch. Hold for 30 seconds. Unfold you the leg and repeat the folded lean and stretch with the other leg. Repeat as many reps as you have patience for. Continue this stretch every day for the rest of your life. The loosened hamstrings will release the tension on the rear of your pelvis and will eliminate or reduce the pinching of nerves in the lower spine (the source of this type of back pain). Patience will get you there.

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